I hope all of you have been having a “hou”-some time this CNY like we did, gathering and catching up with family over food, snacks and laughs (at the comical Hong Kong movies being shown on TV).
It been such a joy scrolling through my Facebook and Instagram feeds, seeing photos of happy faces of my friends, their extended families and pretty outfits, that I made an effort to check my newsfeed more often.
For the first time, we decided to cut short the home visits (拜年) when we saw signs of the boys turning cranky by the 3rd home we paid a New Year visit to, and made a pit stop at the park for a much needed breather (mama here was exhausted trying to get the kids not to break anything or run out of the home), grub and space to let the kids run freely. And what a fab decision it turned out to be! The husband & I even managed to have a longer, uninterrupted chat while the kids took a catnap.
It was interesting to observe how Liam handled questions relatives asked him on school, his little brother and if he would perform a dance on request (which he gamely did on the spot). There were also moments I wished I could stuff a mandarin orange into his mouth when he kept asking “why are we going to bai nian (visit other homes)?”, “why must I wear new clothes”, “why can’t I go out of the (other’s) home?”, “why can’t we go now?”, “why are there so many people?”, “who is this?”, “why must I take another photo again, mummy?”.
The husband reminded me that it was good that Liam was curious and not to discourage his inquisitiveness. So yes, I entertained each and every one of his questions as patiently as I could, with pockets of deep breathe in between.
I was also especially pleased that Liam greeted his elders correctly 80% of the time (Liam even asked how come there are 2 “jiu gongs”) instead of the generic “aunty” or “uncle”. Meanwhile, Ollie escaped greeting most of our relatives because all he could manage was “mama”, “papa”, “korkor”, “taipor”, “porpor”, “gaigai” and other adorable sounds.
It was tough keeping Ollie away from snacking because he would grab any food (especially kueh bang kit!) within reach or offered to while Liam revelled momentarily whenever he caught my worried face as he skated/walked near ponds/pools/driveways just to you know…get my attention. Ugh!
The next few days will see us tossing more yu sheng and bonding over food with friends (thanks to the company giving us an additional 2 days off). Can’t believe how quickly this CNY2016 seems to be coming and going! And before we know it, February is over! And the next public holiday won’t be till 25 Mar, Good Friday!
From our family to yours: May the year of the monkey bring you continued wealth, health, harmony, peace and joy. Gong Hei Fatt Choy!